It’s probably a good thing that rumors have been swirling for weeks that Gary Ross would back out of The Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire. Otherwise we would be reeling from his announcement, made late last night, that he is dropping the project. As it is, we’re still pretty stunned. And Lionsgate is apparently feeling like a jilted bride.
“Despite recent speculation in the media, and after difficult but sincere consideration, I have decided not to direct Catching Fire,” Ross said in a statement released to Deadline. “As a writer and a director, I simply don’t have the time I need to write and prep the movie I would have wanted to make because of the fixed and tight production schedule.”
Man, we know it takes a lot of time to make a movie, but is this a believable reason? From the time he was named director of The Hunger Games in November 2010 to the movie’s release last month, he had about 16 months. That’s about two months less than the time he has before the November 22, 2013 release date of Catching Fire — and he already has his main cast in place. But Ross is sticking to that argument, saying that “contrary to what has been reported, negotiations with Lionsgate have not been problematic. They have also been very understanding of me through this difficult decision.”
While she’s been making Vampire Diaries stars weep and cheer for three seasons as teenage witch extraordinaire Bonnie Bennett, Kat Graham, an admitted workaholic, has been gearing up to make us wiggle our hips and pump our fists with her music. And no, she’s not doing it wearing Bonnie’s subdued cardigans and blazers. We already discussed the curve-hugging, blinged-out look she wore to the NewNowNext Awards last week that was “all about the ass.” Now, let’s take a closer look at the dress and holy-s— shoes she donned to visit Big Morning Buzz Live yesterday. It’s a pretty darn appropriate look to promote her single, “Put Your Graffiti on Me,” wouldn’t you say?
Man, as beneficial as a good run on Dancing With the Stars can be for celebrities looking for a comeback the show is also quite hazardous to their health. Last night, Melissa Gilbert was rushed to the hospital after her performance and later tweeted that she was treated for “mild concussion and whiplash.” Amazingly, her paso doble with partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy, which earned a 22. That’s what separates stars from normal people, isn’t it? We would have been lying down and crying, like, right away.
And speaking of people not acting like normal people, Gavin DeGraw was a total hero last night. He carried Melissa down the stairs like a knight in shining armor. “I think anybody would have done it,” he told People. “She wasn’t feeling good. I think she hit her head, so I asked her if she wanted to lay down or something. So we decided maybe it’d be best to get her out of the skybox so I carried her. It was further than I thought! It dawned on me how far it was when my arms wouldn’t work anymore.”
Check out Gavin DeGraw’s backstage video diary on VH1 Tuner.
On New Girl, Lamorne Morris’ Winston is a pretty smooth guy, current status as a “manny” notwithstanding. Which is why we were surprised to learn that in real life, the actor has zero sense of style and a rather weird sense of what’s sexy, at least according to him. He showed up on the red carpet of the NewNowNext Awards looking laid-back and handsome in a lavender shirt, light-gray blazer with white piping and black jeans, but took no credit for his outfit when he spoke to our own Kate Spencer.
“I cannot dress myself,” he admitted. “If it were up to me, I would be wearing a diaper and a tank top. Maybe a Mr. T gold chain. Maybe some brass knuckles. Maybe a tattoo on my face. I don’t know. I am the worst dresser in the world. Maybe a diamond-studded condom. I have no idea what I would have been wearing.”
Hold on. Did he just say “diamond-studded condom”? Ow.
Creepy. Chauvinist. Medieval. Those were the words that first popped into our head when we learned of the fact that Britney Spears’ father, Jamie Spears, petitioned the L.A. Supreme court to make her fiance, Jason Trawick, a co-conservator over Britney. According to People, Trawick (who is also her agent) would share control over her “well-being” — her food, clothing and medical care — but her finances would still be entirely in Jamie’s hands. This sounds so very 50 Shades of Grey to us. But we called up someone who knows a thing or two about relationships, and celebrity relationships, Dr. Jenn Berman, the therapist star of VH1′s Couple’s Therapy, to give us a better sense of what this means for the engaged couple.
“It definitely creates a shift in power where her parents and her soon-to-be husband will hold a lot of power, and that can create conflict in the relationship,” she told us. “That said it sounds like it’s the right decision. Other people looking out for her seems to have really worked well for her. It helped her in her healing and well-being.”
Oh. Wait. So this is a good thing? Well, come to think of it, since the conservatorship was put in place, Britney has put out two massively successful albums and performed around the world with nary a head-shaving or hospitalization or other scary incident.
Kat Graham and her date Perez Hilton did their darndest to blind us on the red carpet of the NewNowNext Awards last week: Perez with his brand-new abs and Kat with the blingiest corset we’ve ever seen. The two were actually in matching outfits from The Blonds. “It’s very Britney/Justin 2000,” the Vampire Diaries star said of their matching outfit. “That [denim] was iconic. He had the cowboy hat, we have diamonds and studs.”
Kat has certainly been enjoying showing off her curves as she promotes her new single, “Put Your Graffiti on Me.” “I’m all about the sexy part of you,” she told us. “It’s all about the ass in this dress. I think it’s going well so far.”
Every time we post anything on Kristen Stewart, we are completely blown away by the response from fans. There are few stars out there who elicit so much unconditional love. So, on her 22nd birthday, we decided that a simple photo gallery wasn’t enough to celebrate our Bella/Joan/Snow. We asked you to tell us on Twitter why #KStewRules. And the answers made us really, really hope this list makes it to Kristen somehow, and really, really wish there’d be a camera handy at the time. Because she is pretty fun to watch when she’s showered with compliments.
Many of you shared similar thoughts about her independent streak: “#Kstewrules bc love or hate her, she is an original who dares to be herself in a world of manufactured celebs in artificial,” @ALotMoreofMagic said. And @JessieDior wrote, “#kstewrules because she’s independent, knows what she wants, doesn’t pretend to be anything else and is so genuine! We love her.”
A lot of you were most proud of the example she sets. “#KStewRules because she taught me that It’s okay not to be okay,” read one of 11 tweets from @thisbigreeneyes. @pikixina called her “Gaga for Twilight’s fans, she motivates you to be yourself no matter what the people will say.”
Of course, her badassery earned comments like, “#KStewRules because she wants to play the superhero, not the superhero’s girlfriend. AND SHE IS. #SWATH,” from @MyCleverAlias. And her unique fashion sense was another fave: “#KStewRules because she kicks off her high heels on the RC and puts on converse <3,” wrote @steje92.
Because we know Kristen wouldn’t want to leave anyone out, we’re going to share all of the tweets we got with the hashtag since Friday (in reverse chronological order): Read more…
We’re still enjoying this little breather in between awards season madness and summer blockbusters, but our own Kate Spencer already has the MTV Movie Awards on her mind — specifically, the Best Kiss Golden Popcorn, which has been dominated by Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson for three years now. When she got a minute with Hunger Games cutie Josh Hutcherson at the NewNowNext Awards, she gave him the toughest of tough questions: Will Katniss and Peeta’s cave kiss rival any of Bella and Edward’s from Breaking Dawn – Part 1?
“I don’t know, they had a great kiss,” he admitted. “Theirs was so passionate. Ours was like, I was on my deathbed, wasn’t very sexy. I don’t know, we’ll see. Maybe. I’d be so lucky. One can only hope.”
We’ve been worried sick about the news that Gary Ross and Lionsgate are still on the fence about whether the director will return for The Hunger Games sequel Catching Fire. (Negotiations are ongoing as of Monday, we hear.) Would anyone else be able to nail the tone of this story the way he did? But now, we’ve decided not to fret, thanks to Sofia Vergara and Saturday Night Live, who showed us what the movie would be like in the hands of someone, well, less reverent.
In a pink Effie Trinket wig, Vergara shimmied, laughed and gave a great Univision-worthy yell as the Capitol’s newest Hunger Games correspondent, Maria Gutierrez, reporting live from the arena and enjoying herself immensely as the kids stab each other nearby. And in the studio, Bill Hader and Fred Armisen yukked it up as Claudius and Caesar, echoing a number of silly sports news show SNL’s done over the years.
When Jennifer Hudson sang a tribute to Whitney Houston at this year’s Grammys, we were reminded of the extra layer of emotion she brought: Hudson knew something of what Bobbi Christina Brown was going through, and months after the murder of Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew in 2008, it was Whitney Houston who presented her with a Grammy. Now, the Oscar winner is no doubt bracing herself to relive that tragedy once more, as jury selection begins today for the trial of William Balfour, the estranged husband of Hudson’s sister, Julia.
Balfour is accused of killing Hudson’s mother, Darnell Donerson, 29-year-old brother Jason Hudson and 7-year-old nephew Julian King (Julia’s son) in a jealous rage. Hudson is on the list of 300 prospective witnesses and is expected to attend the trial when opening statements are scheduled to begin on April 23. Jury selection will be a painstaking process, to assure they won’t be swayed by Hudson’s star status.
All these years later, we still get choked up remembering JHud’s brave return to the public eye at the Super Bowl and the Grammys following the murders. And just try not to tear up watching her Behind the Music interview from 2010 above.